Jen Jorczak

Lesbianism: an act of civil disobedience

Filed By Jen Jorczak | October 25, 2007 7:40 PM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Marriage Equality, The Movement, The Movement
Tags: Bil Browning, Christian beliefs, ex-gay, Exodus International Ministries, Lesbians, Love Won Out

So, this morning I'm checking my email and there's a post to the GayIndy listserv, warning us all that the Focus on the Family Love Won Out conference is coming to Indianapolis next weekend. Never having heard of such a conference, I naturally clicked on the link to check it out. It's all about Exodus and other "ex-gay" "ministries" (forgive the double sarcastic quotes, but I don't believe in the ex-gay movement, and I don't believe that that movement counts as a ministry), but what sucked me in was the headline "Helpful articles for those struggling with same-sex attraction" under the "culture" menu item.

It takes you to the homosexuality section of another site called "pure intimacy", where naturally I gravitated toward the articles about lesbians, specifically one entitled Control: the last stronghold of lesbianism.

Obviously, I was intrigued. From the opening of the article:

"I feel like a wounded animal, backed into a corner by her enemy and all I can do is to try and strike a frightening pose and make a fierce sound, hoping I can scare him away."

In one of many counseling sessions, the young lady who made this statement was expressing--perhaps more clearly than ever--the feelings that had dominated her life and were such a major factor in her lesbianism.

The article basically posits that lesbianism is a woman's response to having been abused, and can be cured by giving over control of her life to Jesus. At least, I think that's what they're positing--the article is all over the place, making wild unsubstantiated claims left and right:

Typically, a Christian woman struggling with lesbianism comes to us wanting to live a life that is obedient to the Lord. She wants to be free from sexual involvement and free from falling into highly dependent idolatrous relationships with other women.

"Highly dependent idolatrous relationships"??? which you "ex-gay" missionaries would cure by having her read The Surrendered Wife? If you're not familiar, that's just one of many "Christian" books that claim that everything wrong with society and with your heterosexual marriage is due to the wife not being meek and subservient and treating her husband like a king and relying on him for her very existence. "Highly dependent," HA. "Idolatrous," indeed.

A background of abuse--sexual, physical or emotional--has left them deeply wounded. Sometimes the one abused was their mother, who passively suffered at the hands of their father, and they developed contempt for the feminine which they perceived as inherent weakness.

I have no idea how many lesbians out there have been abused in their lives. I can only say that I, luckily, have not been. But the idea that any of us became lesbians because we developed CONTEMPT for the feminine is patently absurd. Lust, appreciation, love, desire, need for the feminine, sure; but contempt? Hardly. Is this stuff making sense to anyone else out there? Because I'm pretty bewildered.

Anyway, the theory is, apparently, that giving up all control of your life to Jesus is only one step toward ridding yourself of your wicked homosexual desires:

The second thing that she may need to die to before control can be surrendered to the Lord is rebellion. Some women will not even start to consider what is said here, or listen to what God is saying to them through other sources, because of a spirit of defiance or rebellion.... Jesus is offering to be her protector.... To say no to Him is to say no to life, to the life that He offers. It is the clay telling the potter what it will be. It is rebellion. It is a sin.

AHA! Now I get it--I was on the right track with the "Surrendered Wife" connection--it's not that they care about two chicks kissing, they care about two chicks not doing what they're told. From the conclusion:

The goal is not marriage. The goal is obedience, becoming who God created us to be. And as we are obedient, life opens up all around us, and all sorts of wonderful things become possible. Our control of our lives was so narrow and constricting. His control offers freedom and abundance.

Does this sound like the Bible, or like George Orwell? I think I prefer the freedom to love my wife. And I'll continue to do so, in joy and celebration. And okay, maybe just a little bit in "the spirit of defiance and rebellion."

NOTE: When I went to post on this subject, I did a TBP search to see if we'd ever talked about "Love Won Out" conferences before, and I discovered that Bil is planning to go, or at least was in August. I don't know if his plans have changed due to Election Season, but Bil, if you're going, let me just say, you're braver than I am. I will run for the hills when these folks come to town.

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Marla R. Stevens Marla R. Stevens | October 25, 2007 7:58 PM

Spot on, Jen!

They also can't seem to make up their minds if we are supposed to be victims of an malady needing a psycho cure with a little godly support or dead-to-rights sinners needing spiritual help to repent.

If it's the latter, then all their NARTHY-harpies are committing malpractice and should have their licenses yanked -- and insurance fraud, including defrauding government insurers, which is subject to both civil and criminal penalties.

If it's the former, then, to parrot an old Robin Tyler schtick, I want disability benefits -- retroactively. Let's see -- conservatively 15 million U.S. queers times an average queer age of, say 38, at several thousand bucks a month, times twelve months a year, compounded ... well, I don't have my financial calculator on me but I think that means we pretty much own everything and that means we get to evict Exodus, NARTH, FOF, the AFA, the TVC, and the rest of their ilk to, say...Antarctica -- on the far side, with zero support...

Jen Jorczak Jen Jorczak | October 25, 2007 9:42 PM

Marla, you're freakin' right! I TOTALLY want disability benefits!

Seriously, though, "ex-gay" therapy is covered by insurance??? Yet people who need serious help get tossed in the street? What is with this country?

Yup, I'm still going. I have to see this for myself.

Plus, Ryan McCann and I attended Inlaws & Outlaws together this week and sat down for lunch the next day. I still need to write it up - I've been too busy.

Great post Jen. SPOT ON. Oh, I wouldn't run for the hills though. I'd pull out a few t-shirts that are too obnoxious to wear in public, if I'd get to go. :)

There's some scary stuff on the internet, seriously.

They don't really ever decide what's up because if they said what they believed, then someone could prove them wrong. If they said you just need to pray, then all those people who've been doing that for years would give up. If they say you just have to get some therapy, and specified what that therapy is, then people who try it would give up on it as well.

But I guess they do say that the real motivation behind all this is to keep women in their place. I'm
going to guess that a man wrote that article, a very, very small man.

Scary stuff, to read about all the wacked-out things people believe. And I used to think Margaret Atwood was a science fiction author! She's a prophet!

Jen Jorczak Jen Jorczak | October 26, 2007 9:13 AM

Bil: I can't wait to hear more about both events.

Marti: I have some good t-shirts, but I don't know that they'd protect me from a brain-washed mob. Maybe you're braver than me, too! :)

Drjillygirl1: Handmaid's Tale is my favorite post-apocalypse novel--and it scares the hell out of me how close we're coming to making it a reality.

Bil, you mentioned you saw Inlaws & Outlaws...just wondering if you have seen For the Bible Tells Me So? It cronicles conservitive Christian families and their journey to accept their gay children. It is a must see folks!!!

Sorry, forgot to include the URL:

There is a release schedule provided.

Sorry, forgot to include the URL:

There is a release schedule provided.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | October 26, 2007 1:04 PM

Argh!! Not the "abuse causes lesbianism" theory again! Make it go away!!! It's been circulating as many years as I've been out of the closet--which is a long time! All I can say is, if this were even remotely true, there would be a lot more lesbians out there. Especially if you're going to include abuse of mothers, too!